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Breastfeeding in Public 2010-05-16 05:00:12

Breastfeeding in Public, Do You Defend Fellow Mothers?

Whether a mother feels comfortable breastfeeding in public or not, it's her right to nourish her baby. On Friday night's What Would You Do?, an experiment was set up to see what people would do when a nursing mother was rudely asked to leave a cafe. If this happened in your presence, how would you react?

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LadyAngel89 LadyAngel89 7 years
Anon - some of us have mentioned that in almost all states there is legal verbiage enabling mothers to breastfeed in any place public or private they are otherwise allowed to be. I don't necessarily believe that it's a duty for others to step in and defend a mother, as not everyone believes the same. But at the same time I believe this should not happen, and that anyone should step in when someone is being verbally abused like in the video shown above. No one deserves to be singled-out and berated like that.
MominHim MominHim 7 years
What is truly sad is if this many women will not support public breastfeeding on a simple forum, how many in the real world are responding the same way. It is beyond ignorance to continue to argue the indecent exposure point. It IS clearly obvious that this video is NOT portraying a mother who was exposed in ANY way whatsoever and it is arguments like this that are instilling so much fear into moms to even consider breastfeeding to begin with. With as many other degrading images in society to argue about, and twice as many ways in which women are objectified, why can we not support one another in the very simple and beautiful act of breastfeeding our children? When will women learn to unify and stand together? It's not a matter of whether you WANT to see "that" as if it were something gross to look at, it's a matter of what's morally right. It is not morally right to ask a mother to leave her meal and/or company to seek out a place to simply feed her child just because she chose the absolute BEST nourishment for him/her. I'm also amazed at the people who think that many stores or restaurants have a sitting room in their bathroom. Let me assure you that they do not. Even if they did however, it is still the mothers right on whether she chose to leave her table, meal, and company to sit in the secluded room to breastfeed and be ogled there by the same ignorant women who didn't want her in the dining area. Can we really say that supporting a womans right to expose her body on billboards or xrated magazines is more morally correct than a womans right to feed their child the way God created them to? Reality check ladies, there are enough people in this world who are going to try and knock you down for so many reasons, including simply being a woman, we need to learn to support one another instead of jumping on the bandwagon of intolerance.
LadyAngel89 LadyAngel89 7 years
Maybe they're not telling me to not feed my child. They just don't want me to feed them "there" or "while they're watching" because it disturbs them. They shouldn't be looking. The point is, regardless of my opinion of children eating or a baby drinking from a bottle, that's a parents decisions and I have no right to say anything and it would be absurd for me to do so, and no one certainly has a right to say anything to me for my choice to breastfeed in public. "This is not the same as a child eating" --- it IS a child eating. Where is the distinction? "Have some class, please" --- I have class, which is why I don't feed my child in the same room where someone may be taking a dump (to put it politely). Breasts are not sexual toys designed for pleasure, that kind of taboo is why many women never breastfeed, and so many lives and so much government money could be saved if we just helped some of these moms feel comfortable and supported anywhere they choose to be.
phatE phatE 7 years
"Case and point, if my baby is hungry. I don't care where I am, she's going to be fed. Maybe I should just put a blanket over your child's head while they're eating... or tell you that it disturbs me to watch you feed a child formula. " no one is telling you not to feed your child, people are asking that you remain covered up because not everyone wants to see your breasts while they are trying to eat.. have some class, please. this is not the same as a child eating, or a baby drinking from a bottle.. if you think it is, you need a reality check.
LadyAngel89 LadyAngel89 7 years
I have to say that I would defend any woman that was being treated this way for feeding their child in public. I have to clarify that it's not a "right" for a restaurant owner to do such things. As a matter of fact, in most cases it's downright unlawful and most states exempt breastfeeding mothers from any kind of indecent exposure related to the act of breastfeeding. While you can have any opinion you desire, lets face the fact... breastfeeding mothers by way of law have the "right" to breastfeed in any public or private place they are otherwise allowed to be. Case and point, if my baby is hungry. I don't care where I am, she's going to be fed. Maybe I should just put a blanket over your child's head while they're eating... or tell you that it disturbs me to watch you feed a child formula.
ladysonoma ladysonoma 7 years
lol...all the posts about the bathroom comment. Commonly, the nursing/changing station is in the restaurant, it has couches for women to sit and handle their babies. A majority of places have them, at least where I live they do. If it's just a little bathroom, I am sure there are a million other appropriate places to go as well as garment designs to make breast feeding a bit more discreet. It's funny to think how women complained to get rooms like that made especially for them, now there is a huge controversy because women don't want to use them.
ladysonoma ladysonoma 7 years
Anonymous, You actually did ask me, if you go back up to your post, you said "you." Like I said, I don't have a problem with women nursing in public, but I have seen women who are extremely open about it. I, simply, think it's polite cover up. If a woman was decent, or at least trying, yeah I'd defend her... when it's time to nurse, it's time to nurse. But if she's squirting milk across the table, and both her boobs are hanging out, her shirt's barely on her body, and all the guys are gawking, then I think that it is rude. Sure, accidents, or tough situations occur, naturally. I can understand that, and it's at that time when I sympathetic. Unfortunately, you can't avoid fecal matter and public restrooms. We, humans, eat tons of it every year; statistically speaking, anyway. Whatever you do, try to avoid the left water taps and the door handle, and use paper towels to touch everything, that's what I do.
phatE phatE 7 years
To the Anonymous who said: " I am so blessed to live in a very progressive and highly-educated area where public breastfeeding is the norm" - your ignorance and entitlement is mind-boggling.. While I agree that mother's need to be treated with respect, I also agree that a manager has the right to ask a mother to excuse herself while she breastfeeds. This is a restaurant, and people do not want to see someone breastfeeding while they are eating. Sorry if you don't agree, but if you demand respect you need to offer the same in return. since when did being a mother exempt you from caring about /respecting the people around you.
Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 7 years
I mean *farther* off in a corner.
Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 7 years
Oh yeah and I wish this video didn't end so soon, I was curious if people reacted differently to a black woman breastfeeding.
Bettye-Wayne Bettye-Wayne 7 years
I have no problem with it, but I know that it makes a lot of people uncomfortable and I always did it with as much privacy as possible. In that restaurant scenario, I would have sat with my back turned to everyone father off in a corner, not facing the front door. Feeding in a bathroom though? Disgusting.
commonsense102 commonsense102 7 years
Lets not "let the exception be the rule" Most of us breastfeeding mom's are discreet about nursing. I highly doubt that you see a huge boob being suckled everytime you leave your house. If there is a little too much boob for you and your loved ones to see in public... look the other way. You know it doesn't happen that much for people to be so up-in-arms about it. I find things like people talking with a full mouth upsetting or showing their butt crack when they sit down, but I don't ask management to have them escorted out of the restaurant. I have a laugh and look the other way... it gives me something to talk about with friends.
ladysonoma ladysonoma 7 years
Well, anonymous, if it were me, I would take it to the restroom or to my car. Nudity in public is not acceptable where I grew up. Breastfeeding is okay, but it's polite to cover up with a blanket, or wear a shirt for nursing. It's not close minded to feel people should cover up, but it is rude to not be a lady about it. At the very least try...
lawchick lawchick 7 years
I don't object to it, but I don't feel strongly enough to say anything. This would be a SHOCKING thing to see in my deep south community, though - I've never seen a woman breastfeeding outside of the home. I can only imagine the general public would freak out, especially since breastfeeding isn't all that popular here.
starbucks2 starbucks2 7 years
Another reason why I love living in Germany...nobody ever minded me nursing my child in public. As soon as you get the hang of it, it's pretty discreet. I mean, the baby's head covers most of the breast anyway. And common sense put it best when she said breasts are intented for nursing children. It's really not my fault men have sexualized them! Oh and Jereldan. Yes, it can be avoided, but why should it be? I really never went out of my way to nurse in public because I felt like exposing my boobs! With a newborn you can't really predict when their hungry and since I knew how to do it without my nipples showing to everyone I really didn't see the point in hiding in an ugly and dirty bathroom!
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